Invited Speakers

Antony Kunnan

Antony John Kunnan is a language assessment specialist currently with Duolingo as a Principal Assessment Scientist and with Carnegie Mellon University as a Senior Research Fellow. His research interests are fairness of tests and testing practice, assessment literacy, research methods and statistics, ethics and standards, and language assessment policy. After completing his Ph.D. from UCLA, he has held academic positions in Ann Arbor, Los Angeles, Taichung, Hong Kong, Singapore and Macau.

He has conducted 120 seminars, workshops, plenary and invited talks in 36 countries and published widely by authoring and editing books and writing journal articles and book chapters. His most recent book is Evaluating Language Assessments (2018); his most recent journal article is “Developing a Scenario-based English language assessment for an Asian University” in Language Assessment Quarterly (2022, with C. Qin and C. Zhao); and his most recent book chapter is “Revisiting language assessment for immigration and citizenship: The case of the U.S. Naturalization Test” in The 2nd Handbook for Language Testing edited by G. Fulcher and L. Harding (2022).

He was founding editor of Issues in Applied Linguistics (1989-199, founding editor of Language Assessment Quarterly (2003-13) and Asian TEFL Journal (2017-). He was past president of the International Language Testing Association and founding president of the Asian Association for Language Assessment. 

More details about him are available at: www.antonykunnan.com

Rukmini Banerji

Rukmini Banerji has been with Pratham (www.pratham.org) since 1996. She has extensive field experience in program design and implementation and has led many of Pratham’s partnerships with state governments. Rukmini also led Pratham’s research activities, including the well-known Annual Status of Education Report (ASER) effort from 2005 to 2014 (www.asercentre.org). She became CEO of Pratham Education Foundation in July 2015.
Initially trained as an economist in India, she did her B.A. at St. Stephen’s College and attended Delhi School of Economics. She was a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford University and completed her Ph.D. at the University of Chicago.
In 2008, Rukmini was awarded the Maulana Abul Kalam Shiksha Puraskar by the Government of Bihar. She was the first recipient of this award. Also, she is the 2021 Yidan Prize awardee for education development. Originally from Bihar, she is now based between New Delhi and Pune. Rukmini writes frequently on education in both Hindi and English and enjoys creating stories for children.


Constant Leung

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Constant Leung is Professor of Educational Linguistics in the School of Education, Communication and Society, King’s College London.   His research interests include academic literacies, additional/second language teaching and assessment, language policy, and teacher professional development.  He is Editor of Research Issues of TESOL Quarterly, and serves on a number of editorial boards, including Australian Review of Applied Linguistics, Critical Inquiry in Language Studies, Language and Education, the Modern Language Journal and Research in the Teaching of English.  His work in developing the English as an Additional Language Assessment Framework for Schools (funded by the Bell Foundation) was the recipient of the 2018 British Council ELTons International Award for Local Innovation. He is a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences.


James Enos Purpura

James Enos Purpura is Professor of Linguistics and Education in the Applied Linguistics and TESOL Program at Teachers College, Columbia University, where he teaches courses in SFL assessment. He is also Director of the Scenario-Based Language Assessment Lab. Jim has published several books and articles, and given scholarly talks on the following topics: cognition and language assessment, the assessment of grammar and pragmatics, integrated content and language instruction and assessment in ESP contexts, learning-oriented language assessment, and more recently scenario-based language assessment. Jim was President of ILTA, Editor of Language Assessment Quarterly, and a Fulbright Scholar in Italy.


Jayakaran Mukundan

Jayakaran Mukundan, PhD, retired as Professor at UPM (Universiti Putra Malaysia), Malaysia, where he’s presently Honorary Professor. He was a secondary school teacher with the Ministry of Education for 11 years. He served on the National Panel for the Class Reader Program as well as on several Ministry of Education Assessment Panels. He also was for many years an evaluator for public exams. Then in 1990 he joined UPM as a Teacher Educator.

As a researcher he works mainly on ELT Materials investigations, the latest (2022) being a collaborative effort with professors at Imam Abdulrahman bin Faisal University, Dammam, Saudi Arabia. He has won several awards: in 2013, he won the highest award, the National Award for Academic Excellence in the Teaching Category. His research on Teaching Materials (Textbook Evaluation software) has won him Gold Medals at the British Invention Show, London (2009) and at IENA, Nuremberg, Germany, (2010).

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